Home Food Stun your guests with a stunning no-bake French dessert: Floating Island

Stun your guests with a stunning no-bake French dessert: Floating Island

Look no further if you want to amaze your visitors with a refreshing no-bake dessert. Poached meringues float over crème anglaise (vanilla custard), a smooth and silky cream created with milk, egg yolks, sugar and vanilla in the Floating Island.

August 16, 2021: The well-known dessert, Floating Island is a French dish. This dish, also known as œufs à la neige (eggs in the snow) and île flottante (floating island).

Image: Pinterest

Floating Island

Poached meringues float over crème anglaise (vanilla custard), a smooth and silky cream created with milk, egg yolks, sugar and vanilla in the Floating Island. It’s a simple and quick treat to prepare. Serve it cold, and you’ll want to make it again and again.

Preparation – 1 hour

Cooking – 1 hour

Total time – 2 hours

Cuisine – French

Serves – 6/8

Image: Pinterest

Recipe for Floating Island


For Creme Anglaise

  1. 6 large egg yolks
  2. ⅔ cup sugar
  3. 1½ cups very hot milk
  4. A pinch of salt
  5. 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  6. 3 tbsp unsalted butter (optional)
  7. 2 tbsp rum or another liqueur (optional)

For Meringue

  1. 1 tbsp softened butter
  2. ¼ cup sifted confectioners’ sugar
  3. 1⅔ cups egg whites (about 12)
  4. 1½ cups granulated sugar
  5. ½ tsp cream of tartar
  6. A large pinch of salt
  7. 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

For caramel sauce

  1. 1 cup granulated sugar
  2. ⅓ cup water
  3. 2-3 tbsp heavy cream
  4. 1 tbsp butter

For serving

Fresh berries, optional

Also Read: Soft and fluffy cream puffs that take you to dessert heaven

Image: Pinterest


For creme anglaise:

  • In a 2-quart saucepan, whisk the egg yolks, gradually adding the sugar, if it’s added all at once, the yolks will get grainy.
  • Continue to beat for another 2 to 3 minutes, or until the mixture has turned pale yellow and is thick. Stir in the hot milk in dribbles, rather than beating it in, because you don’t want the sauce to foam.
  • Set the saucepan over a low heat and stir slowly with a wooden spoon, reaching all the way to the bottom and sides of the pan.
  • You must be careful not to overcook it and scramble the yolks, but you must have the confidence to cook it long enough to thicken it. Surface bubbles begin to recede, and you may notice a scent of steam rising almost immediately, indicating that it is almost ready. At this stage, be cautious; you’re almost there!
  • When a light creamy layer coats the wooden spoon thick enough to hold when you draw your finger across it, the sauce is done.
  • Combine the vanilla, butter, and rum in a mixing bowl. Warm, tepid, or cold is fine.
  • Note: The sauce can be kept refrigerated for several days in an airtight container.

For Meringue

  • Butter it and then dust the inside of a straight-sided 4-quart baking dish with confectioners’ sugar, knocking off the excess. Preheat the oven to 250 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Begin by whisking the egg whites at a low speed until froth forms, then add the salt and cream of tartar and gradually increase the speed to high until soft peaks form.
  • By large spoonful, add the sugar and continue to beat until firm, shiny peaks form.
  • Pour the meringue into the prepared baking dish after adding the vanilla extract.
  • Preheat the oven to 250°F and bake for 35-40 minutes. Set in the lower middle of the oven and bake until the meringue has risen 3 to 4 inches.
  • When a skewer or straw is inserted into it, it comes out clean, is when it is done.
  • Place the dish on a rack to cool. As the meringue cools, it will return to its former height.
  • Note: It will keep for many days in the refrigerator or several weeks in the freezer if sealed airtight.
Image: Pinterest

For Caramel Sauce

  • In a saucepan, combine the sugar and water and bring to a simmer. Remove the pan from the heat and twirl it by its handle to ensure that the sugar has completely dissolved and the liquid is crystal clear.
  • Cover the pan closely and cook the syrup over moderately high heat for several minutes, looking every minute or two, until the bubbles are thick. Remove the lid from the pan and continue to boil, stirring the pan carefully with the handle. The syrup will begin to darken in a matter of seconds. Remove from heat after a few seconds of boiling and swirling, until it is a light caramel colour. Combine the butter and cream in a mixing bowl. Return to a low heat, stirring constantly with a fork until any hardened caramel melts and the sauce is smooth. Place the pan’s bottom in cold water to chill it and halt the cooking.

To serve

  • In a serving platter, pour the custard sauce (or individual dessert plates). To loosen the meringue dish, run a knife along the edge and push with a rubber spatula. Remove the meringue from the mould and place it on a cookie sheet. Cut it into 6-8 pieces and place them on top of the sauce.
  • Reheat the caramel until it can be lifted with a fork and dribbled thick strands over the meringue just before serving. If wanted, serve with a few fresh berries on the side.

Written by: Sugyani Mohapatra


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